Manipur’s Imphal will be the fourth capital city in the hilly northeastern area predicted to appear on the Indian railway map over the next 27 months, despite the Covid-19-related restrictions and the major geographical barriers and challenges.
It’s going to lay tracks to link Mizoram and Nagaland, two more northeastern states. The Northeast Frontier Railways (NFR) has so far connected Assam’s main city Guwahati (adjacent to capital Dispur), Tripura’s capital Agartala, and Arunachal Pradesh’s Naharlagun (adjacent to capital city Itanagar).
The NFR has no specific plans for when the capitals of Meghalaya and Sikkim, Shillong and Gangtok, would be connected to the railway network, as railway building work in the two northeastern states has not even begun.
Record length of over 71,066 meters of tunneling is being constructed
According to NFR Chief Public Relations Officer Guneet Kaur, the NFR (Construction) organization is working on the Jiribam-Imphal new broad gauge railway line (111 km) project, which is expected to be completed in December 2023 for Rs 12,264.15 crore.
“A record length of over 71,066 meters of tunneling is being constructed,” she told IANS. “Eight new station buildings, 11 major bridges, 134 minor bridges, four road overbridges, 12 road underbridges, and a record length of over 71,066 meters of tunneling are being constructed.”
Concerns for timely completion of the project; by Act East Policy
“All parties discussed several concerns connected to the project’s timely completion. By the Indian government’s “Act East Policy,” the timely completion of this project is critical for future rail connectivity to Myanmar “According to the CPRO.
According to a senior engineer with the NFR (construction wing), a safety tunnel for the safe evacuation of people during any emergency has been built at tunnel number 12 on the Jiribam-Tupul-Imphal railway line, which is noteworthy because the section will have the tallest bridge in the world and India’s longest railway tunnel.
The project’s completion will expose the globe to Manipur’s rich culture, he remarked.
Manipur is home to the world’s highest railway bridge
On the Jiribam-Tupul-Imphal railway line, tunnel number 12 is the longest railway tunnel in India, measuring 11.55 kilometers. It is longer than the famous Pir Panjal tunnel (8.5 kilometers) on the Banihal-Qazigund line in Jammu and Kashmir.
The cost of building this tunnel, which runs through two Manipur districts, Senapati and Imphal West, and is located in the western section of the Imphal Valley, is estimated to be Rs 930 crore.
“A parallel 9.35 km long safety tunnel has been built at tunnel number 12 by international technical criteria for the safe evacuation of persons in the event of an emergency.
Every 500 meters, cross passageways will connect the main tunnel and the parallel safety tunnel. The construction of the safety tunnel cost Rs 368 crore “declared the engineer.”
Because of its significance, the 111-kilometer Jiribam-Tupul-Imphal new wide-gauge railway project was proclaimed a “National Project” in 2008.
Around 140 years ago, the first train in the northeast area chugged out of the industrial city of Dibrugarh in eastern Assam.
The NFR, one of India’s 17 railway zones, serves six of the eight northeastern states, excluding Meghalaya and Sikkim, as well as seven West Bengal districts and five districts in north Bihar.
Problems and challenges faced in the Northeast: says NFR engineers
The geography, soil conditions, and other natural problems, according to NFR engineers, have pushed the railways to invest more money and face a variety of challenges in the northeastern region.
“In comparison to other sections of the country, the northeastern region’s soil or earth-bearing capacity is significantly lower. Nothing is impossible for railway engineers, but “According to the NFR engineer.